jet-assisted takeoff

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jet-assisted takeoff (JATO)

An auxiliary means of assisting heavily loaded aircraft and reducing takeoff distance. The JATO consists of small rockets attached to the lower portion of the rear of the aircraft. These rockets fire at an appropriate time on takeoff and provide additional thrust. The rockets are jettisoned at a safe place after takeoff. Also called rocket-assisted takeoff, or RATO.
An Illustrated Dictionary of Aviation Copyright © 2005 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved
References in periodicals archive ?
Navy and successfully developed jet-assisted takeoff systems and rocket motors capable of variable thrust.
8 AUG 1929 Jet-assisted takeoff lifts a Junkers W33 seaplane from the Elbe River in Germany.
He mentions Goddard's team working on jet-assisted takeoff (JATO) units for the U.S.
[Because the term "rocket" invited public ridicule, contemporary engineers called them JATO units, for jet-assisted takeoff..]